What is this?
VoidBound calls itself a sci-fi ero RPG with a focus on variety in combat mechanics. The ‘ero’ part referring to the erotic nature of the game. Be warned, VoidBound is certainly not a family-friendly game – even more than some of the 18+ games we normally cover.
While it refers to itself as an RPG, I’d note the visual novel aspects too. The story is partially told through visual novel style gameplay, with more interactive moments than normal.
VoidBound is currently just a demo. As such, this is a write of my thoughts and impressions after playing, rather than a full review after going through everything I can.
Caly is an engineer who works on satellites. She seems to be a rather laid back woman in many ways, but tragedy strikes early on; As she is working, she watches as aliens suddenly attack Earth.
Waking up restrained, naked, and in a tube isn’t the nicest situation to happen, but this is what happens to Caly. She has been captured and is being experimented on. Naturally for a game that calls itself an ‘ero RPG’, this involves a probe called the stimulator – a phallic tool that is aptly named. I’ll let your imagination fill in the details of what happens here.
Luckily Caly manages to escape, but not before a thorough probing. This theme continues throughout VoidBound with Caly getting in and out of situations, but not before being violated in some way.
We soon learn the Earth is just the latest planet to be added to the Urtu empire, which is about half of the known planets at the moment. It turns out that Earth is just a backwater planet, having no chance to resist. After having a vision from a psychic bee-like creature that Caly rescues, she heads off to another planet to find out what’s there. Her mission – to find a way to save humanity.
While much of the story does seem geared towards getting Caly in sexual situations, there is potential for it to be interesting. It has themes that don’t often get covered – there have been mentions of being sold into slavery and interspecies-relations. Quite a lot of work has been done to build up the world too, considering that the main focus is as a lewd game. It’s not exactly a narrative masterpiece, but it’s better than some of the competition in that way. I would’ve liked to be a bit more engaged in the story though or got to know a bit more about Caly other than her having rather little concern about her repeated bodily violation.
VoidBound starts as if it was purely a visual novel with some occasional interaction with the environment. This interaction and occasional chances to choose options to learn more do make it more of a custom experience than some. I came across a couple of minor issues here, but nothing too serious. Things like learning the bee-like creatures name from an item, before actually naming it.
After the start, the demo moves on to a classic RPG dungeon-based experience. You have to navigate levels by moving your character around and occasionally solving some basic puzzles. The puzzles have been quite basic – generally following basic patterns or finding certain objects. I did find this quite tiresome at times as there wasn’t much thinking involved – mostly just going around back and forth with some occasional dialogue. Sometimes that going back and forth lasted too long.
There are enemies wandering around too. The ones I’ve come across so far have had pretty simple search patterns, which they only deviate from if they notice you. If you get caught you go into battle.
This is where the RPG elements come into play more. You can move around the grid to get in place and choose from a number of moves. Each move can only hit within a certain range or certain positions. They take up different types of energy too, so if you run out of one type of energy, you might end up a lot more limited in choice. The game also comes complete with RPG stats (including sex stats), equipment, items to use, and so on.
As you might expect, the enemies can rip your clothes, restrain you and do various other things to you in battle. A nice touch is that this is reflected in how you look when you go back into the dungeon – a lot of games would just have the default sprites remain.
The combat wasn’t bad, but I did find myself getting restrained far too often. You can only struggle to get out of it if you want to continue fighting back, which left me repeating the same action pretty often. You can also still use items while restrained, which I did think was odd – you can’t aim a gun while restrained, but you can set up a turret.
I can’t say that I was much of a fan of the gameplay portion, but these types of games are often a lot more basic than this. ‘It’s good for what it is’ is how I’d describe it.
Visuals are quite good on the visual novel portion of the game. There’s a good amount of CGs and their quality is high. Backgrounds and sprites are well done too with a good amount of detail. The visuals elsewhere aren’t bad, but they don’t stand out as amazing. As mentioned though, I was impressed by the RPG character sprite having little details such as being nude after clothes are ripped off in battle.
The music and sounds work okay for the most part. I didn’t feel like they stood out overly, except for some occasional voiced words which often felt off in tone.
In the end, VoidBound probably isn’t for me despite the amount of care I can see has been put into this – I’ve never been one for RPG Maker games though. I can still appreciate that it’s a fairly good example of them though and the visual novel portions certainly work well to get you where you’re going – the sex scenes. There’s room for improvement, but it’s a demo so there’s still time for that. If you enjoy these types of RPGs and seeing busty engineers getting violated repeatedly…
Check Out VoidBound
Many thanks to CursedAtelier for an early look at this demo.
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A gamer since the days of Amstrad and DOS and someone who has dabbled in a variety of professions. He enjoys a wide variety of genres, but has been focusing on visual novels and virtual reality in recent years. Head Editor of NookGaming. Follow him and the website on @NookSite.